St Patrick's day

History

St. Patrick. Who was he? What did he do? Why the snakes?

St. Patrick was born in Britain around 440 AD. Late in his childhood, he was captured by Irish raiders and taken to be a servant there. His faith, not very strong until that point, was bolstered during his enslavement. He escaped when he was 22, and went to live in a monastery in Britain. However, he had a vision in which voices told him that it was his mission to go back to Ireland. He departed for Ireland at once, and so became one of the first Christian missionaries to go there. His mission was largely sucessful, and he set up many churches and schools. He tried to convert as many people as he could. He also expected that he could be killed or imprisoned at any time for trying to convert people to Christianity. St. Patrick is said to have driven the snakes out of Ireland. This is a metaphor for driving out the druids and pagans, which Patrick did by converting people. There never were any real snakes on Ireland. However, the metaphor stuck.

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"Happy St. Patrick's Day Chicago!" The Local Tourist .com. 16 Feb. 2006 <http://www.thelocaltourist.com/stpaddy.htm>.

"Saint Patrick" Wikipedia.com. Various Dates <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Patrick>.

"St. Patrick's Day Parade" Chicagostpatsparade.com. 9 Mar. 2006 <http://www.chicagostpatsparade.com/index.html>.

"Saint Patrick's Day" Wikipedia.com. 9 Mar. 2006 <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Patrick%27s_Day>

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